Airport Express Review: Great Product, Not Insanely Great

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Date: Wednesday, September 1st, 2004, 00:17
Category: Hardware

Apple Airport ExpressApple came up with a great idea with the Airport Express but fail to follow through.
Back in June, I was planning on doing some work on my house. The big frustration for me is that I wanted to be able to distribute my iTunes music to 4 different rooms in my house. I was all set to start running audio cable through my house, then Apple announce the Airport Express, the answer to all my problems (or so I thought). I got my first Airport Express tonight and started playing around with it, and I must say it works great. The audio quality is top notch (I am a Sound Mixer in Hollywood so I am fairly critical of these things). Read More…


Apple Airport ExpressApple came up with a great idea with the Airport Express but fail to follow through.
Back in June, I was planning on doing some work on my house. The big frustration for me is that I wanted to be able to distribute my iTunes music to 4 different rooms in my house. I was all set to start running audio cable through my house, then Apple announce the Airport Express, the answer to all my problems (or so I thought). I got my first Airport Express tonight and started playing around with it, and I must say it works great. The audio quality is top notch (I am a Sound Mixer in Hollywood so I am fairly critical of these things).
I was about to put in an order for three more units when I came across a perplexing problem. When I selected the Airport Extreme in iTunes the computer speakers shut off. As it turns out you can not play out of your computer speakers and stream to an Airport Express at the same time! After digging into Apples FAQ on the AE it turns out you can only stream to ONE AE at a time!! So much for having my music throughout the house.
This is a MAJOR disappointment, and reading all the cut sheets on AE Apple sure makes it seem like you can send music to multiple AEs at one time, it is only if you dig through the support pages that you find out the truth. I would have expected this kind of deception from Microsoft, but not from Apple.
I sure hope Apple fixes this, it is in their best interest because I suspect there are a lot people like me would love to buy a handful of these things.
This is my only gripe about the product, other than that I love it…. well ok, I have one more gripe.
It sure would be nice If I could use the USB port for more than just printing. I would love the be able to hook up a USB drive to the AE and have an instant network storage device for my 3 computers. Netgear is doing thing right now, I suspect that Apple will not be far behind, seems to me this would be a very easy thing to implement through firmware.
Hey Apple, the Airport Express is a great product, it just isn’t insanely great. I guess I will be running the cables over the weekend, glad I procrastinated on doing my home improvements.
A happy but slightly disappointed customer.

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